Photography and Video

Cameras, camcorders, and photography advice.

How Can I Backup Programs From My DVR?

AT&T UVerse

Episode 1816

Scott from Orange County, CA

Scott's wife is a TV news anchor who recorded her broadcasts on DVR. How can they back those up? Leo says it depends on the DVR, and sadly it isn't a matter of taking the hard drive out and connecting it to your PC. Every DVR manufacturer has put encryption on the hard drive because of copyright. TIVO has something called TIVO to Go, which makes it easier. But a more proprietary DVR like AT&T UVerse may be near impossible save for one option: the analog hole. You can put a computer with a video capture card between the TV and the DVR using the analog component cables.

Chris Marquardt and the Emptiness

Chris Marquardt

Episode 1816

Chris is back and this week he's talking about EMPTINESS and how to use it in photos. Also called negative space, it can help the viewer focus on what the subject is really all about.  But the emptiness itself can also end up being the subject of the image. And often, the surroundings aren't as empty as you think; it's just how the photographer framed the image and where it ends.

Here are a few examples:

How can I calibrate my computer monitor to be more accurate?

Episode 1815

David from West Hills, CA

David is into astal photography and he's learning photoshop at the same time. When be processes an image, he checks it on a secondary computer and the look is inconsistent. How can he get them all to show the same image? Should he get a new PC? Leo says that it's a challenge, even for professional photographers because every monitor is different.   Having a monitor that is capable of reproducing the largest gamut of colors can help. You can get a color calibrator, called a Spyder, and that could help. And it's done fairly inexpensively.

How Do I Connect My Epson FastFoto Scanner to WiFi?


Episode 1813

Paul from Columbus, OH

Paul got an Epson FastFoto scanner as a gift, and now he can scan all the images that he has in photo albums. But when he connects it, it wants a WPS security connection. Leo says while WPS is terrible, it was the way to connect at the time, with a simple touch of a button. But nowadays, Leo wouldn't use it, and there are other ways to configure WiFi through the Epson software. Users may have to connect the printer via USB to their PC just to configure it with the WiFi password. After that, they can disconnect the USB cable.

How Can I Live Stream a Bee Keeping Demonstration?

YouTube Live

Episode 1812

Joe from Knoxville, TN

Joe is retired and is going to be a volunteer beekeeper for a local science museum. But things have changed a lot in the last few years. So he wants to do live video streaming. Leo says you can do it with your smartphone and stream to Facebook Live or YouTube Live. The camera is as good as any camcorder. Even the audio will work well. Then kids can watch using their classroom computers or other devices. That's definitely the way to go.

Chris Marquardt and Black and White II

Chris Marquardt

Episode 1809

Chris is back to talk about black and white photography.  Black and white photos have an iconic look, stripping away color which can sometimes distract from what the photo is really all about. It also really looks great with geometric patterns. Of course, you can take a color picture and then strip the color information in favor of black and white, but Chris prefers to shoot the image natively in black and white because he can see in black and white as well. It'll also give you more grain information according to the lighting. 

Here are some examples - 

Should I Buy a Mirrorless Camera or Upgrade My iPhone?

Sony a6000

Episode 1809

Mark from San Diego, CA

Mark is an avid photographer, but his current camera is an iPhone 6S. Leo says that the iPhone takes great pictures. He was thinking about buying a new mirrorless camera, but he's seeing just how good the iPhone is. Should he buy a new camera or upgrade to the best iPhone out there? Leo says that the iPhone 12 Pro Max would be a definite upgrade with a third super-wide lens and the ability to do computational photography. But Leo says that a mirrorless camera gives you more manual control.

Chris Marquardt and Shooting the Milky Way

Chris Marquardt

Episode 1807

Chris joins Leo to talk about how to get pictures of the Milky Way. Here are photos for today's segment:

Summer is a great time to engage in night sky photography because it's not as cold.  But you'll need a tripod because the better night sky photos are timed photos. You use the 600 rule. Divide 600 by your focal length and you get the proper exposure time. But under 20 seconds is a good rule of thumb.  

Chris Marquardt ... Photography in Hot Places


Episode 1805

It's now summer, so Chris joins Leo to talk about shooting pictures where heat is an issue. Cameras can overheat, so you want to keep your camera within the operating temperature range rated for that model. Know when the hottest time of the day is, which is usually in the late afternoon, and avoid those times. Sunrise and sunset are ideal. You get better light and it's not as hot. Hot often coincides with dust and sand, so don't change lenses while you're outside. Also, have a bulb blower to blow off the mirror and sensor.